Neighbors hate our guineas

Discussion in 'Guinea Fowl' started by KCNC06, Dec 26, 2009.

  1. KCNC06

    KCNC06 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Central NC
    We bought nine guinea keets this past May, traded two guineas to my mom for three chickens, our remaining seven have done far better than I expected them to. We bought the guineas because we had a terrible tick problem. The plan had always been to allow the guineas to free-range. There are no regulations in our "neighborhood" prohibiting guineas or any other creatures. The only thing our restrictive covenants say is that barns or "livestock" structures need to be more than 100 feet back from the road. Our next door neighbors obviously hate the guineas, though they won't admit it to us. We actually saw and heard them encouraging their big black lab to "bowl" the guineas over. The dog doesn't seem to care about the guineas at all when left on his own.

    The birds (the seven guineas and seven chickens) have a fenced pen area, but two of the chickens have learned how to hop over the four foot fence, and the guineas fly out of the fence by climbing up onto their roof. We live in the woods, pretty much in the middle of nowhere, on just over six acres. Like I said before, the point of the guineas was to have something to keep the ticks under control. The guineas have no concept of "our yard" and go into the neighbor's yard regularly and eat the wild bird food that is either purposefully thrown on the ground by the neighbors or spilled by the wild birds. We wrangle the guineas back whenever we see or hear them in the neighbor's yard, but we're not always home and can't watch the birds all day if we are. I'm starting the get a little concerned that the neighbors will do something malicious in their efforts to get rid of our guineas - since their dog doesn't seem interested in learning to attack the birds. The guineas aren't hurting anything, other than eating the wild bird food and pooping....and being a little loud. These neighbors let their dogs run free over the whole "neighborhood" (our neighborhood is just two streets in the country). The neighbors on the other side of these neighbors (two houses down from us) don't mind the guineas at all, and the people across the street from us like the guineas and even put snacks out for them. The across the street folks said that the guineas aren't nearly as annoying as "those dogs" that run around all the time. So it's just the one couple that we have an issue with. (The neighbor's dogs are in our yard all the time. Our dogs have to be fenced in all the time because the neighbor's dogs have free run of our yard, peeing on everything, pooping wherever the please and even stealing our kindling.)

    I've considered running a "strip" of wire fence in the woods between our yard and the evil neighbor's yard, but I'm not sure if it would actually prevent the birds from going into the neighbor's yard or if they would just figure out how to get around it. The property line on that side is probably close to 1,500 feet long, though the neighbor's part is only about a third of that length and the guineas only cross over into their yard in about a 200 foot strip. Being my father's daughter - I've considered jumping past being nice and going right into a feud with the neighbors, but the one neighbor is a friend/co-worker of my mother-in-law.

    Any suggestions on how to keep the guineas out of the neighbor's yard? Would there be any obvious signs if the guineas ended up being poisoned (I seriously wouldn't put it past these people)? Though the guineas are annoying, I've grown to like them. They really seem to like being around people.

    Thanks!
     
  2. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    May 13, 2008
    A tall fence makes the best Neighbors, I know their dogs run amuck around the area but that doesn't mean it's ok for you to let your birds do the same, it is a touchy subject and neighbors will always tend to be difficult. Two wrongs don't make a right, you have plenty of room and by confining your birds it will keep their dogs out, problem solved, except if you decide that they should fence first and continue to bicker back and forth over who is right or wrong. I am sure you will find most responses here will favor birds over the neighbors dog, but if you want an honest look your both a little at fault, try to find a way to work it out or this tit for tat sparing could go on for a long time. Good luck to you, I hope things work out for both of you.

    AL
     
  3. hikerchick

    hikerchick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 6, 2009
    Dover, PA
    My neighbors guineas used to prefer my yard to hers and I felt blessed by them. After they all got taken by predators, I missed them so much that I got some of my own. Now I have another neighbor telling me to keep them on my own property. I guess I don't understand why someone wouldn't appreciate free tick removal service, but some people are just hard to fathom. I love the noise they make; I love watching them. I am sorry your neighbors are such creeps.
     
  4. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    Oct 13, 2007
    California
    [​IMG] You can't really keep them from going where ever it is they feel like going, unless you cooped them up and enclosed a run.

    My guineas get on my last nerve, and not because they're noisy or anything like that, but they pick on my chickens and are such bully's even though they've been with the chickens - were hatched by chickens. I get so angry with them.

    I see my chickens standing outside the coop after dark, because the stupid guinea's won't let them in the coop - or won't let them get on the VERY VERY long roost. [​IMG]
     
  5. vstoltzfus

    vstoltzfus Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Aug 10, 2009
    Lancaster County, PA
    Well...this is tricky, because they never told you they didn't like the guineas in their yard. Did you ever ask them, point blank, if they mind the guineas in their yard? If you haven't then go ahead and do that as a first step. Then take their word at face value. If they say they don't mind the guineas in their yard then believe them, and let the guineas roam. If they say yes, then you need to do whatever it takes to keep them out of their yard. It is their yard, and as a good neighbor you need to keep your animals out of it. This would also be a great time for you to talk about their wandering dogs. Open, honest, and kind communication is the the first step to living well with other people. Good luck!
     
  6. al6517

    al6517 Real Men can Cook

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    Quote:Very well said......................

    AL
     
  7. Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay

    Lazy J Farms Feed & Hay Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:The neighbors should not have to be subjected to loose livestock. Who cares if the never said they dislike the guineas, they should have the RIGHT to not have them in their yard.

    Contain your livestock on YOUR property, be a responsible owner.
     
  8. KCNC06

    KCNC06 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Sep 19, 2009
    Central NC
    I understand that no one should have to deal with livestock that they don't want. Just like no one should have to deal with dogs that aren't theirs running through their yard, or cats hanging out in their garage. I also understand the theory of two wrongs don't make a right. At the same time, I think it stinks that we "have" to put up with their dogs just because they were here first and their dogs have always had free run. It really seems that these neighbors have just always gotten away with intimidating or bullying people. Every other neighbor that we've spoken to has said that they would rather not have these neighbor's dogs running free all the time. There's also a "community" peacock that shows up from time to time.

    Before we got any of the birds we talked to them about it, they said they didn't care but didn't know how any of the other neighbors would feel. As I mentioned before, we've talked to all the other neighbors now and they all have said that they don't mind the guineas at all. They eat the ticks, fertilize the yard and are pretty funny to watch. Once we got the guineas, we talked to them again, they said the birds didn't bother them. The first time the guineas got out of their pen while the neighbors were over in our yard (uninvited I might add, they seem to feel that they have the right to cross our property and throw things in our firepit whenever they want), their dogs were over and the dogs didn't bother the guineas at all. They said they were concerned the dogs would eventually catch one of the birds because they had caught another neighbor's chickens a couple years ago. The dogs didn't have any interest in the guineas or chickens though. The first time we saw the guineas in the neighbor's yard, we went over and apologized and the neighbor's said that it was no trouble - they were just concerned about us being upset if a dog got one. We said that we weren't all that worried about that, and to let us know if the birds were ever a problem. Just give us a call or chase them back into our yard - it doesn't take more than a couple steps towards them to get them running in the opposite direction. Anytime we've said anything to them about letting us know if the birds are a problem or even point blank asking them, they always say they're not a problem or they're "not that bad".

    Yet we still saw the husband jump out of the car one afternoon when they pulled in, run to the backyard to let their dog out of the pen, heard him yell something to the dog, the dog ran right past the guineas and up to the wife, the wife yelled to the dog that he was "absolutely worthless" for not bowling the birds over (they were actually in the woods on our side of the property line at that point). My husband called for the guineas and they came running towards him, then the neighbor noticed him and said "Oh hi. I didn't see you there. Don't worry about them, they're not causing any trouble." Why tell us that the birds aren't "causing any trouble" just a few seconds after telling your dog he was "absolutely worthless" for not bowling them over (she actually said "bowl them over" to the dog)?

    We have tried clipping their flight feathers, but even with their wings clipped they're able to get up onto the roof of the coup and fly out of the pen. The fenced in pen area for all our birds is about 22,000 square feet, so I don't think covering it would be easy. I also don't really see the point of having the guineas for tick control if they have to be penned all the time. I'd also guess we would have to have a very high fence to keep them in our yard because, even with clipped flight feathers, they're able to get from the ground up onto our roof (single story house).

    I used to really dislike our guineas. They were really mean to the chickens for a while. Once we decided to let them roost outside, things have gone much more smoothly though. Does anyone know if they're less likely to roam if there are less of them? I'm starting to wonder if they'd be more likely to stay close to home if we had three instead of seven. The biggest thing though seems to be that they want to be where people are. If we're not outside or not home, they'll go looking for people.

    I think I'd be less annoyed and frustrated by the whole thing if they neighbors would just be honest with us.
     

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